This section of the News and Media Services department site tracks stories in print and broadcast media that feature Auggie faculty, students, and staff. The area also is home to material developed for University-related programs, events, and more.
More than 870 Augsburg University undergraduate students were named to the 2022 Fall Semester Dean’s List. The Augsburg University Dean’s List recognizes those full-time students who have achieved a grade point average of 3.50 or higher and those part-time students who have achieved a grade point average of 3.75 or higher in a given term.
E.B. White wrote that the role of the artist is to “see things whole.” These three words underlie a leadership philosophy that cultivates whole leaders and thriving organizations to positively impact the common good. Following a generous gift in 2022, Augsburg University has established an institutional home to support and extend this practice: the Reell Office of Seeing Things Whole.
First developed in the early 1990s, Seeing Things Whole is a three-fold model that helps individuals and organizations think about their lives as a set of relationships among three key dimensions—identity, purpose, and stewardship. The Reell Office of Seeing Things Whole connects Augsburg’s mission of educating students as responsible stewards and thoughtful leaders to the way organizations engage in meaningful, purpose-driven work in the world.
“The three dimensions of Seeing Things Whole align well with Augsburg’s commitment to educate for lives of service,” said Tom Morgan, professor of leadership studies, who introduced Seeing Things Whole to Augsburg in 2016, integrating it into the Master of Arts and Leadership and Master of Business Administration programs.
“No matter what the chosen discipline or professional aspiration, learning is best grounded in clarity regarding one’s values (their Identity), thoughtful consideration of who it is they desire to serve (their Purpose), and an abiding sense of how one’s resources are acquired and are being cared for (their Stewardship).”
Seeing Things Whole offers a disciplined process to support leaders who seek greater connection between their organizational values and the challenge of navigating today’s accelerating changes in the workplace.
“I feel energized to support leaders’ ability to think critically about the unique times in which we find ourselves while remaining deeply rooted to the values that support them to thrive,” said Keri Clifton, program director.
The Reell Office of Seeing Things Whole encourages individuals and organizations to participate in Whole Leader Roundtables, where attendees work collaboratively to understand all dimensions of a given problem, explore tensions, and work toward achieving an effective resolution for all stakeholders and across multiple bottom lines. Monthly roundtables are free and open to the public. Register now to attend the next roundtable on March 8.
Teams and organizations can apply the three-fold model to a wide variety of challenges, including strategic planning, strategic decision-making, succession planning, governance, and developing organizational mission, vision, and values. At the individual level, Seeing Things Whole offers a pathway to creating stronger connections between one’s values, sense of purpose, and leadership action. Individuals can begin exploring Seeing Things Whole as a tool for growth by completing the Whole Leader Profile at no cost.
For 30 years, the Augsburg Health Commons have advanced a model of nursing practice rooted in accompaniment, social justice, and transcultural nursing practice. In early January, the program received a $50,000 Health Equity Innovation Fund grant from AARP and the Center to Champion Nursing in America, a joint initiative of AARP Foundation, AARP, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to deepen and expand this work.
“We are moved beyond words to be selected for this opportunity,” said Katie Clark, associate professor of nursing and executive director of the Health Commons. “These funds will not only help relieve some of the suffering people are forced to endure in the immediate term, but will also help cultivate ideas and solutions for the long term in caring for people who experience marginalization.”
The first Augsburg Health Commons drop-in center opened at Central Lutheran Church in downtown Minneapolis in 1992. Most people seeking care at the Central location live without a permanent residence or are marginally housed. In 2011, a second location in Cedar-Riverside opened in response to a need for accessible, no-cost health care services identified by members of the East African immigrant community located near Augsburg’s campus. Both locations center community voices and are led and organized by nursing faculty members, nursing and physician assistant volunteers, students, and community members.
The people who come to the Health Commons are from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. Everyone is welcome, and all services are provided free of charge. Health concerns might include nutrition, medication, stress management, respiratory conditions, injuries, skin problems, and chronic disease such as diabetes and hypertension. Frequently, people experiencing these problems come to Health Commons locations for their easy access, supportive environment, and assistance with connecting to other health care resources.
Going forward, the Health Equity Innovation Fund grant project will focus on three interconnected goals.
Continuing and expanding care for marginalized communities.
Deepening the focus on health equity, systemic racism, and structural inequities in nursing education.
Disseminating knowledge to influence the nursing profession towards greater inclusiveness.
The Health Commons will continue providing opportunities for the most marginalized communities of Minneapolis to live healthier lives as they are cared for in local context. In addition to existing sites at Central Lutheran Church and Cedar Riverside and work with local encampments, the grant will allow staff and volunteers to explore new partnerships at other locations, including in North Minneapolis in collaboration with Augsburg’s physician assistant program.
By providing paid research and practice internships for graduate nursing students, the grant will also support the educational mission of the Health Commons. Students in Augsburg’s BSN, Master’s, and DNP programs will continue to learn to decode systems of oppression that are embedded within systems and social norms, and to promote health equity by connecting with others through shared humanity. The project will fund dissemination of research by Augsburg faculty and students through conferences and publishing. In so doing, it aims to create pathways for developing inclusiveness within the nursing profession, both in practice and in the academy.
“Our Augsburg nursing faculty are excited to be able to dig deeper into naming systemic and structural racism in partnership with people with lived experience in an effort to begin creating needed change in healthcare and the discipline of nursing,” said Clark.
Augsburg Health Commons is one of 16 organizations nationally to receive a Health Equity Innovations Fund award for 2022. The awards through the AARP Center for Health Equity through NursingSM and the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, an initiative of AARP Foundation, AARP, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, are for projects offering promising solutions aimed at eliminating structural inequities, particularly structural racism, within the nursing profession, health systems, or community, and for projects that help improve access to care and services for those most disproportionately impacted by health disparities. Projects also support the advancement of one or more of the recommendations in the National Academy of Medicine report, “The Future of Nursing 2020-2030: Charting a Path to Achieve Health Equity.”
On January 21, the Augsburg Art Galleries will open a new exhibition featuring nine local, Black women and femme designers. TO ILLUMINATE ABUNDANCE, curated by Olivia House ’20 and Silent Fox ’18 of 13.4 Collective, explores what it means to live a life full of love, freedom, and light.
TO ILLUMINATE ABUNDANCE brings together nine Black designers at various stages in their careers. House and Fox invited contributing graphic designers to reflect on and illuminate a text, quote, or lyric that helps imagine what it could look like to move forward and towards more; to help envision what life is like when it feels full. The exhibition features work by Ashley Koudou, Kelsi Sharp, Leeya Rose Jackson, Marcia Rowe ’22, Olivia Anizor, Sabrina Peitz, and Terresa Moses, as well as House and Fox.
“This show is meant to express what our world should be: a world in which Black femmes are able to live a life without pain or suffering; a life full of light,” said House.
An opening reception for TO ILLUMINATE ABUNDANCE will take place on Saturday, January 21. The curators and artists of the show will gather for an artist talk on Thursday, February 2 at the Hagfors Center to contextualize their work and their view of the exhibition within a broader landscape of making, community, politics, and futurism. This event is featured as part of The Great Northern festival, happening January 25–February 5 around the Twin Cities metro area. The Great Northern celebrates Minnesota’s cold, creative winters through 10 days of diverse programming that invigorate mind and body.
In 1997, Augsburg University was one of just four colleges and universities with a formal collegiate recovery program. Today, StepUP® at Augsburg University is one of the oldest and largest residential collegiate recovery programs in the United States accompanied with sober living. More than 700 students have graduated from the program, which celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2022.
The Phoenix Spirit recently published a piece by Nell Hurley, recruitment and outreach coordinator for StepUP, tracing the program’s history and impact.
“StepUP is so much more than a sober dorm,” Jon Stentz, one of StepUP’s Licensed Alcohol and Drug counselors, told Hurley. “It’s the connection and the community that students find here that makes all the difference. It’s been said that connection is the opposite of addiction. The StepUP connection is where the magic is. Our students support each other and hold each other accountable. They’re all in this together, both the college journey and the recovery journey.”
StepUP offers a robust program of support and accountability that includes clinical support, random drug testing, weekly meetings, recovery service opportunities, and optional but regular social outings like rock climbing, camping trips, and game nights.
Green chemistry is the design of chemical products and processes that reduce the use or generation of hazardous substances. “It’s benign by design,” says Associate Professor Michael Wentzel, whose own research focuses on the development of green synthetic methods in the field of sustainable chemistry.
In his role as department chair and undergraduate summer research coordinator, Wentzel works to help students build their science communication skills—a crucial factor in advancing systemic change for a sustainable future.
One way to communicate the magnitude of a big step forward? Print up the biggest possible certificate.
Having signed on, Augsburg joins more than 50 other institutions that have agreed to integrate green chemistry across the curriculum and sub-disciplines of chemistry. A primary goal of the commitment is that upon graduation, all chemistry majors will:
Have a working knowledge of the twelve principles of green chemistry.
Have an understanding of the principles of toxicology, the molecular mechanisms by which chemicals affect human health and the environment, and the resources to identify and assess molecular hazards.
Be able to to assess chemical products and processes and design greener alternatives when appropriate.
Be prepared to serve society as scientists and professionals through the articulation, evaluation, and employment of methods and chemicals that are benign for human health and the environment.
Beyond Benign is a nonprofit organization founded in 2007 to provide educators with the tools, training and support to make green chemistry an integral part of chemistry education. Through programs like the Green Chemistry Commitment, they work to help catalyze the development of green technological innovations that result in safer products and processes in support of a sustainable, healthy society.
In a December ceremony in Oslo, President Paul Pribbenow conferred upon King Harald V of Norway the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa.
“We are deeply grateful for Your Majesty’s abiding support of Augsburg University and our sister Norwegian-American colleges and universities throughout the more than three decades of your reign,” said Pribbenow in his ceremonial remarks. “We share both a common heritage and profound commitments to peacemaking and global citizenship.”
His Majesty King Harald V of Norway acceded to the throne January 17, 1991. The future king attended the Norwegian Cavalry Officers’ Training School and went on to finish his military education at the Military Academy in 1959. Upon completion of his military service, he attended Balliol College at Oxford University from 1960 to 1962, studying social science, history, and economics. He holds the rank of general in Norway’s army and air force, and of admiral in the navy.
King Harald and his wife, Queen Sonja, visited Augsburg in 2011. The recognition—originally scheduled for 2020 but delayed by the pandemic—is part of Augsburg’s sesquicentennial anniversary celebration.
MPLSART.com recently interviewed Khadija Charif and Yasmin Yassin, two Soomaal House of Art fellows whose solo exhibitions are on display through December 14 in the Augsburg Galleries.
Photographer Yasmin Yassin’s show, “Should Be Good Times,” explores her journey towards motherhood during quarantine, taking viewers physically through a womb-like space with photographs hung from the ceiling.
“I thought, ‘What if you have to go in and experience the exhibit by using your body and moving through it?’” she told MPLSART.com. “You start at the beginning of this hallway-like gallery space and go all the way down, but you have to move through the pieces as well, and it gets narrower as you go. I wanted to provide that darkness and enclosure, to try and recreate the feeling of spending all that time in my apartment.”
Artist and Poet Khadija Charif’s show, “Strangers of My Sight—In Truth and In Trial” explores “the kindness, love, and short companionship that strangers provide.” The exhibit includes a private space with two chairs and a set of cards which present compelling quotes and questions for visitors to explore.
“What I hope is that this space allows others to explore conversations with a stranger,” said Charif. “Grab someone you’d like to know, invite them to the table and ask questions. Not the light questions that bore us but the questions that excite us and allow us to deconstruct the barriers we naturally set when we meet strangers.”
The Soomaal Fellowship is a collaboration between Augsburg Galleries and Soomaal House of Art, a Somali artist collective in the Seward neighborhood, that aims to harness the power of art as a tool for intellectual and civic engagement by advocating and advancing the creative development of Somali visual artists. The partnership will continue with new fellows showcasing their work on Augsburg’s campus every 18 months.
Augsburg University experienced the largest percent increase in nonwhite students among any college or university in Minnesota over the past decade, according to data analyzed by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal. The analysis looked at institutions with more than 1,000 students using data from the Department of Education.
Augsburg President Paul Pribbenow was interviewed about the changes. “We are still a predominantly white institution in terms of structure and leadership, though that’s changing,” he said. “So we’ve had to do a lot of important training and intercultural work, knowing that these students are coming to us [with] a very different life experience. And they come to us with different kinds of needs and expectations.”
He attributed much of the growth in Augsburg’s diversity to its relationships with local high schools. Nearly 70% of Augsburg’s most recent entering undergraduate class identified as nonwhite.
Today, Common App announced the 2022-2023 launch of its direct admissions pilot, which aims to flip the script on college admissions and offer proactive admission to college-interested students.
“Direct admissions is about changing the narrative of a college education from one of scarcity to one of opportunity, by ensuring students know that college opportunity is an abundant resource—and one that’s available to them,” said Jenny Rickard, President and CEO of Common App. “No waiting, no wondering if the institution is looking for a specific set of characteristics. While we’re still in the early stages of this pilot, we’re excited about the potential of this work to help more students pursue a college education.”
Common App has piloted a direct admissions program since 2021, offering admission to students who created a Common App account and provided enough academic information– but had not yet completed all of their open applications. The latest iteration of the pilot offered admission to 18,000 students at six participating institutions, and over 800 students accepted the offer. Results showed the impacts of the intervention were strongest for Black or African American, Latinx, and first-generation students.
For the third round of the pilot, Common App and 14 participating institutions reached out to nearly 30,000 students with direct admission offers. Augsburg is the only school in Minnesota selected to participate in this year’s pilot.
“Our institutional commitments to equity and inclusion require that we work to transform inequitable systems in higher education,” said Robert Gould, Augsburg’s vice president for strategic enrollment management. “We jumped at the opportunity to pilot direct admissions through the Common App as part of a comprehensive new approach we call Augsburg Applies to You.
“Moving away from a gatekeeper model of admissions means we can connect with students who thought college was out of reach. It gives our counselors more capacity to support students through the college selection process and cultivate a sense of belonging even before they set foot on campus.”
Augsburg University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and 11 graduate degrees to approximately 3,200 students of diverse backgrounds at its campus in the vibrant center of the Twin Cities and nearby Rochester, Minnesota, location. Augsburg educates students to be informed citizens, thoughtful stewards, critical thinkers, and responsible leaders. An Augsburg education is defined by excellence in the liberal arts and professional studies, guided by the faith and values of the Lutheran church, and shaped by its urban and global settings. To learn more, visit augsburg.edu/about.
About Common App
Common App is a not-for-profit member organization committed to the pursuit of access, equity, and integrity in the college admission process. Each year, more than one million students, one-third of whom are first-generation, apply to college through the Common App’s online application. In January 2019, the Common App united with Reach Higher, the college access and success campaign started by former First Lady Michelle Obama during her time at the White House. By joining forces, Common App and Reach Higher accelerated progress toward our joint goal of supporting all students, especially low-income and first-generation students, in achieving their higher education dreams. Founded in 1975, Common App serves over 1,000 member colleges and universities worldwide. To learn more, visit commonapp.org and follow @CommonApp and #CommonApp on social media.